OBJECTIVE OF PISHE PASHA: Get rid of all your cards as fast as possible.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 players
NUMBER OF CARDS: standard 52-card
RANK OF CARDS: K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, A
TYPE OF GAME: Shedding
AUDIENCE: All Ages
INTRODUCTION TO PISHE PASHA
Pishe Pasha is a two-player card game played in the United States, primarily in Jewish communities within the states. Although, the game presumably was imported from Europe. There are several variations on the spelling of the game, the most popular being Pisha Pasha. However, Pisha Paysha and Persian Pasha are also common alternatives.
The game is suited for 2 players and uses a standard 52 card deck. The cards are shuffled by one of the players, a dealer, who then proceeds to deal themselves and their opponent 26 cards. Typically, cards are dealt two at a time and are stacked facing downward.
The goal of Pishe Pasha is to dispose of all your 26 cards into foundation piles. These piles are built from ace to king, each pile a separate suit. Or, players may place them into their opponent’s discard pile.
Starting the Game
The non-dealer starts the game by turning over the top card of their stockpile. If the card isn’t an ace it is to be discarded into their discard pile. After, its the dealer’s turn.
However, if the non-dealers first card is an ace, they must start a foundation pile with it for that suit. The non-dealer then flips over the next card on top of their stockpile. This card must also be played is it fits a foundation pile, after an ace it would be a two. This continues until the non-dealer turns over a card which will not start a foundation pile or fit on one. The card which does not fit must be discarded, face-up, into their discard pile. This concludes their turn.
The Dealer’s Turn
It is now the dealer’s turn. They start by flipping over the top card from their stockpile.
- If it fits on a foundation pile it must be played on that pile.
- If the card is either one rank higher or lower than the top card of their opponent’s discard pile (no matter the suit), it can be played on that pile.
The dealer keeps flipping over cards from their stock as long as they can play cards to a foundation pile or their opponent’s discard pile. Once they turn over a card that cannot be played, the dealer must discard it to their own discard pile. The dealer’s turn is over and their opponent takes their turn.
The Next Steps
On the non-dealer’s second turn and onwards, they have another option for their turn. If the top card if their discard pile can be moved to a foundation pile, it must be done. However, it is optional if a player’s top card of their discard, which is either 1 rank higher or lower than the top card of the dealer’s discard.
If a player does not wish to play the top card of their discard, they can flip over the top card of their stockpile and try to play the cards following the same rules above. A turn continues until a player can no longer play any cards.
Other Aspects of Play
If a player breaks a rule, their opponent can declare stop. At this point, they have the option of forcing the player to correct their play or end their opponent’s turn.
Players may miss chances to play to their opponent’s discard pile, for this, there is no penalty. In some cases, it may be better to keep the card rather than play it in an opponent’s pile. But, once a card is placed in a pile it cannot be moved.
THE END GAME
Once your stockpile is empty, turn over your discard pile and draw from it. You will have to create a new discard after that moment.
If you have cleared your stockpile and your discard pile first, you have won the game! The winner of the game scores 1 point per card remaining in their opponent’s stock and discard piles.